[Fixed] YouTube TV Showing ‘Error Licensing Video’ on Roku

Licensing errors are commonly associated with violations of video usage terms or copyright infractions. However, these issues are often mere ‘false positives’ that can be easily addressed. Such errors have been reported across various devices that support Roku, including smart TVs. Triggered typically by updates to the YouTube TV app or the device firmware, these errors can often be rectified through troubleshooting.

YouTube TV Error Licensing Video Roku
YouTube TV Error Licensing Video Roku

To resolve YouTube TV licensing errors on Roku, one should begin by rebooting the device and checking for firmware updates. If the problem continues, reinstallation of the app or even a factory reset of the Roku device may be necessary. Prior to these actions, verify that Roku and YouTube TV services are operational in your region.

1. Restart the Roku Device and Router

Communication issues between your Roku device or router and Google’s servers can result in licensing errors in the YouTube TV app. A simple restart of these devices can often restore normal function.

  1. Through the Roku menu, navigate to Settings > System > Restart 
    Restart Roku from the System Menu
    Restart Roku from the System Menu
  2. Once completed, check if the licensing error on the YouTube TV app is resolved.
  3. If the restart does not resolve the issue, power off the Roku and the router.
  4. Unplug their power cords. For a Roku streaming stick, remove it from the HDMI port on the TV.
  5. After waiting for a minute, plug the router back in and turn it on.
  6. Connect the Roku to a different HDMI port on your TV and reconnect the power cord.
  7. Power on the Roku and launch the YouTube TV app to check if the error has disappeared.

2. Update the YouTube TV App and Roku Firmware

Out-of-date versions of the YouTube TV app or Roku firmware may cause compatibility issues which in turn might lead to licensing errors. Ensuring that both are current should prevent these problems.

Update the YouTube TV App

  1. Press the Home button to reach the Roku Home screen and select the YouTube TV channel.
  2. Press the * button and opt for Check for Updates.
    Check for YouTube TV Updates on Roku
    Check for YouTube TV Updates on Roku
  3. Relaunch the YouTube TV app and verify if the licensing error has been resolved.

Update the Roku Device’s Firmware

  1. Access Roku Settings, proceed to System > System Update.
  2. Select Check for Update and if one is available, allow it to install.
    Open System Update in the Roku System Settings
    Open System Update in the Roku System Settings
  3. Open the YouTube TV app to determine whether the licensing error persists.

3. Clear the Cache of the Roku Device

Cache corruption on your Roku device can cause apps like YouTube TV to malfunction. Clearing the device’s cache may rectify such issues.

  1. On the Roku remote, press the Home button five times, click the Up arrow once, press Rewind twice, and Fast Forward twice.
  2. This process might take up to 30 seconds, and then see if YouTube TV operates correctly.

4. Re-log into the YouTube TV App

Problems with authentication on Google’s servers can result in licensing errors. Logging out of and then back into the YouTube TV app can renew your session and permissions.

  1. Launch the YouTube TV app and head to the Menu.
  2. Click on your profile icon, navigate to Accounts, and choose Sign Out.
  3. Open YouTube TV once more, sign in again, and verify whether the error has been addressed.

5. Change the Password of the Google Account

Altering your Google account password can resolve authorization issues by refreshing your account’s security credentials.

  1. Sign out from the YouTube TV app and exit it.
  2. Go to your Google account via a desktop browser and sign in.
  3. Click on the Security section, select Password, and follow the prompts to change it.
  4. Following the password change, and log back into YouTube TV with the new password to see if the issue is resolved.

6. Reinstall the YouTube TV App

Corruption stemming from a flawed app update may cause licensing errors. Reinstalling the YouTube TV app can eliminate corrupted files and restore app functionality.

  1. Use the Roku remote to visit the Home screen, highlight the YouTube TV app, and press the * button, then select Remove Channel.
    Remove YouTube TV Channel from Roku
    Remove YouTube TV Channel from Roku
  2. Afterward, visit the Roku Channel Store, reinstall the YouTube TV app, and check if the licensing issue is gone.

7. Launch YouTube TV through the YouTube App

On occasion, you can bypass authorization problems by accessing YouTube TV via the main YouTube app.

  1. Launch the YouTube app on Roku.
  2. Within the app, select the option to switch to YouTube TV and check for the error resolution.

8. Reset the Router to Factory Defaults

Note: Please ask your ISP to do this step for you, as doing it yourself may delete essential settings that are required for router to operate properly.

Issues with your router may prevent effective communication between your Roku and Google’s servers. A factory reset might be necessary but should be approached cautiously.

  1. Find the router’s reset button and use a paperclip to hold it until the device restarts.
  2. Once restarted, reconfigure the router according to the manufacturer’s guidance.
  3. Test whether YouTube TV on Roku is now functioning properly.

9. Reset the Roku Device to Factory Defaults

As a last resort to resolve stubborn licensing errors, reset your Roku to its original factory settings.

    1. Navigate to Settings > System > Advanced System Settings > Factory Reset and confirm this action.
      Factory Reset the Roku Device Through Settings
      Factory Reset the Roku Device Through Settings
  1. Subsequent to the reset, configure your Roku from the beginning and reinstall YouTube TV.
  2. Assess if the licensing error continues to be an issue.

In the event that these troubleshooting steps fail to solve the problem, attempt to operate YouTube TV on a different device. If it functions correctly elsewhere, seeking assistance from Google Support or Roku Support would be the next advisable step.


Raza Arshad

Raza Arshad is a certified Google IT Support Professional. With a keen eye for detail and a passion for problem-solving, he excels in identifying and resolving bugs and Windows-related issues. Armed with a deep understanding of computer systems, Raza effortlessly navigates through complexities to pinpoint the root cause and implement effective solutions. His exceptional skills in bug detection and Windows troubleshooting make him a valuable asset in any IT support team.